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Long-term care facilities in southwest Iowa ready and waiting for a vaccine

Gov. Kim Reynolds expects supplies for vaccines to begin as early as next week, pending the approval of Pfizer and Moderna's versions of the coronavirus vaccine. Healthcare workers and long-term care facility residents will be the first to get the vaccines.
Posted at 6:23 PM, Dec 07, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-07 19:23:32-05

COUNCIL BLUFFS, Ia. (KMTV) — Long-term care facilities are desperate for a vaccine. Matt Wyant with Pottawattamie County Public Health says a number of facilities got hit by the virus.

"We have Oakland Manor out in Oakland, Iowa that was hit really hard, Risen Son has been battling with COVID, we also had Midlands, Bethany Lutheran," Wyant said.

Bethany Lutheran Health Services partnered with a local pharmacy through the state of Iowa. The facility is waiting to hear from the pharmacy to develop a vaccine distribution plan.

"That stress level for our staff here is pretty high because of that constant risk and you never know what's going to happen, so it'll definitely be a huge burden that's released from us," Bethany Lutheran Executive Director Samantha Roth said.

Wyant said Pottawattamie County Public Health has planned a strategy for the last eight weeks.

"Rehearsing and doing trainings to be able to unroll this process with as little notice as 72 hours, 72 hours notification that we know the vaccine is on its way, we will be able to activate our processes and be open," Wyant said.

He insists that it will take the public's cooperation for us to make it out of this pandemic.

"The light at the end of the tunnel is definitely there, but it takes the effort of the public to roll up the sleeve and get that vaccination," said Wyant. "The vaccine's not going to stop it but if we get people to take the vaccines, it will."